The first week and a half of kindergarten

It's official, we have made it through our first week & a half (nearly two weeks) of kindergarten for Mr. Ben.

As a somewhat last minute decision, aka it came down to mid July before I decided, we are homeschooling for kindergarten and thinking of a university model for next year.

Since I am a middle school teacher by trade and I decided rather late in the game what we were going to do, we are keeping pretty close to the kindergarten curriculum Faith used at her university-model school:
  • Saxon 1 Math (skipping K, as did Faith, since Ben was tagging along with addition & subtraction already last year)
  • Explode the Code phonics (bought Ready Set Go, need to probably switch to Book 1 as RSG is a bit easy for him)
  • Handwriting without Tears Kindergarten (like this a lot, Ben is pretty happy with it too)
  • BOB books, Saxon Phonics & Spelling Readers (I have both of Faith's still). We attempted to use Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons, we both hated it after the first couple of lessons. We're modifying our own version with lots of phonics practice. Going to add a few site words this week.

Other things that aren't official curriculum--tagging along with Faith for history and learning about some of the medieval times, tagging along with Faith for science as we do a bumblebee unit study right now, lots and lots of reading together. I also have What Your Kindergartner Needs to Know which I'm using as a sort-of reference book, just to make sure I'm not making any glaring omissions.

Ben has also had some random fun stuff to do that I'm hoping mirrors the "centers" idea in kindergarten. I brought out assorted sorting/scooping/organizing activities from last year, our Discovery Toys Playful Patterns set, some bigger puzzles (48 pieces & up), mazes & dot-to-dots for pencil control, etc. Today, we started working on animal classification too--furry, feathery, bugs, fish, and other (which ended up being amphibians).

But the best possible part of all this? Ben is reading! Up till now, he has had all the pre-reading skills but no interest in putting it all together. He seems to have decided that since he is now in kindergarten that he has to learn to read--no arguments here! So far, he has read the first four BOB books, the first 2 Saxon K paper readers, the first Saxon K glossy reader, and most of Hop on Pop by Dr. Seuss!

For outside school times, he is still taking taekwondo 3 times per week, he's doing Adventure Champs at church on Wednesday nights, and I found an art class he can take once per week too. I also signed him up for a one-time homeschool science class (they offer single classes throughout the year) and we're planning on going to some of the homeschool swim & ice skating times held at local places.

Hoping to take our first field trip this week to the Museum of Nature & Science in Dallas. I have passes for the Imax that we need to use and the kids both like the Children's Museum inside.